News & Resources

Washington's long-term care training law revisited

Oct 28, 2011 Matt Roesly

A background check bill that had its approval process delayed for the past three years will need to be voted on again by Washington residents, the Seattle Times reports. Budget cuts have prevented the rule - which would expand background screenings for long-term care (LTC) worker - from being processed in the past. Currently, LTC worker screenings only look for in-state convictions. Employees with less than three years of state residency are subject to an FBI fingerprint check. The plan would also require new workers to undergo federal background screenings starting in 2012. "There is some cost to the state, but the voters have already made it clear that it's a priority," Sandeep Kaushik, a spokesman for the initiative, told the news source. "We're confident that the voters are again going to say that this needs to happen." Workers would need 75 hours of basic training, and would be paid wages for class attendance. It's estimated the initiative would cost around $18 million over the next two years - during a time when Washington is looking to cut $2 billion from its finances. KUOW-FM notes that the new law would stagger training costs over several years, reducing the strain on the state's budget.